How do you cope with the knowledge tsunami and keep sane? Combined with that, creation groans in travail awaiting the perfect world, while knowledge and understanding are power. You can have knowledge, without understanding, or used with wisdom.
Eras Men Have Lived Through
Mankind has lived through many different eras. You can look back to the Ice Age, the Stone Age, and the Bronze Age. Much later there was the Agricultural Era/Age, and the era of the Industrial Revolution. Now, we are in the turbulent and unpredictable explosion of the Era of Knowledge, or Knowledge Tsunami.
This was prophesied in the Bible, thousands of years ago. The prophet Daniel wrote about the end time, “Many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall increase,” (Daniel 12:4). In his wildest nightmares he could not have imagined spaceships and space stations, jet aircraft, satellites, technology and instant communications. It takes a lot of effort to cope with the Knowledge Tsunami.
What started out as a light-hearted look at something in the Bible, has turned into something quite different. First, I will quote Romans 8:22, “We know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain……..even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.” So what does this really mean and how to deal with the knowledge tsunami that is constantly evolving?
A Chaotic World
Who doesn’t long for a better world instead of the chaotic mess we find ourselves in, with knowledge coming at us from a dozen different sources? The worst storms in a hundred years, the worst floods, fires, and droughts in living memory. Riots, unknown viruses, senseless shooting incidents where schoolchildren are killed, wars and more wars. Soaring temperatures, the icecaps melting, and rising sea levels, the list goes on and on. To say nothing of the indignities man perpetrates on man.
Creation is groaning like never before, unless you count the time that dinosaurs were wiped off the face of the globe. It’s great news that scientists might be able to ‘nudge’ an oncoming asteroid away from the blue planet. Though, that is still in the realm of science fiction. I can’t see them stopping a meteorite.
Yet, on a day-to-day basis we are inundated with knowledge that is constantly evolving. Our biggest challenge is to keep our balance and use our knowledge wisely, to help and encourage others.
Skim Read in the Knowledge Tsunami
At Christmas we sing about peace to men of goodwill, but that is a distant dream. Whether or not you are a bible-person, humanity longs for ‘Peace’. Oldies look back and say, “Life was never like this when I was growing up.”
They are right. There wasn’t instant communication and the knowledge tsunami we have now. We sit in the comfort of our home and watch a 10-metre-plus storm-surge threaten a coast thousands of kilometres away in live-time. We can switch channels and watch a dozen different versions, or change the topic.
It is important we learn to skim read and prioritize what we choose to consume. There is a time for everything – understanding, entertainment, empathy, work, relaxation. It is a wise person who is well-rounded and mature in the harvest of knowledge.
I don’t have enough hours in the day to waste on fruitless searches and the ability to skim read is essential. I hate it when I stumble onto a lengthy article that has the information I am looking for, but there are no headings to help me navigate my way to what I am searching for. I simply move on to a more ‘readable site’ that ensures I can adroitly find what I am looking for.
I am also very intolerant of ‘rubbish’. I want my research, or entertainment watching/reading to help me grow as a person. To enlarge my understanding and increase my empathy.
The Gigantic Size of the Knowledge Tsunami
Karakas says, “The volume of data/information created, captured, copied, and consumed worldwide increased from 41 zettabytes in 2019 to 59 zettabytes in 2020. This figure is expected to rise to 74 zettabytes in 2021, 94 zettabytes in 2022, 118 zettabytes in 2023, and 149 zettabytes in 2024. Such knowledge explosion has never occurred until now in the history of human civilization.”
I have trouble working out a megabyte let alone what a zettabyte is. Karakas describes it as a zettabyte as a ‘Knowledge Tsunami’. Some claim that human knowledge doubles every 12 hours, which would mean 730 doublings in one year. To me that feels like a fast-moving vehicle that is totally out of control, if it is true. That would mean we can never catch up, so it becomes vital we keep alert, prioritize, and be flexible. Choose what we spend our time on, as time, like the spoken word and fired bullet, can never be regained.
Not all Knowledge is Equal
Knowledge has different values. Some is for entertainment, other knowledge gives us understanding, while still other information provokes growth, or solves a problem. The danger is how do you know what is real and what is false news? Not only that, different people have totally opposing views. Just take climate change. Is it real, is there anything we can do about it? Is it just another cycle?
In the midst of the knowledge tsunami we need to keep our balance. Be passionate about things, but remain passionately centred. Knowledge is like a seesaw; too far out of balance and you quickly become a fanatic. We have an inherent need to discover new things, but do it carefully, balancing it on what information you have already gleaned.
If you are being side-lined by extraneous information, be aware you might be falling down a rabbit hole. You need to remain focused and selective in the use or your time. When I begin writing, I am on a journey of exploration and must prioritize all the time. So much to learn about and research, so I can encourage others. Then there is the time spent checking and rechecking.
Listen to your Subconscious
Knowledge is highly emotive, so you need to use discernment and wisdom in the type of information and knowledge you allow to flow into your receptors. There is a subconscious reaction to knowledge and information, from any source, creates a reaction in us. You should listen to your inner being and how you receive and process that information.
Just as we are encouraged to employ parental guidance on what our kids watch, so too, we need to employ filters on our own knowledge gathering. It is not a mater of a ‘closed mind’, but again, the use of wisdom. If you constantly feed on negative information, you begin to exude that same negativity. Just as ultra loud music numbs the senses, so too, you can become desensitized by the knowledge tsunami. Let your subconscious work and listen when you are on overload.
I was in a conversation yesterday and kept giving the wrong answers to a very nice lady. I mentally shook myself and realized for some crazy reason I was on overload. My mind was off on something entirely different. I either needed to move away from the conversation, or focus more on what was being asked. Our subconscious plays a much larger role in our life, than we give it credit for. There is a time for everything, including relaxation.
How do you Cope with the Escalating Knowledge Tsunami?
Fahri Karakas says that we witnessed a decade of events in one year, in 2020. Everyone was on overload from the knowledge that came at us from every direction. There was a deadly pandemic, a global movement for racial injustice, massive Australian bushfires, stock market crash, the American election steal, Prince Harry and Meghan Merkel quit the royal family. There was a massive explosion at a Beirut port, the first black woman vice president of the USA, deadly wildfires on the American west coast, and the death of Judge Ruth Ginsburg, to name just a few. It was a year ‘from hell’, but it was also a pivotal year, that changed the way we viewed a lot of things.
How do you cope with the escalating tsunami of knowledge without drowning? One step at a time! An inevitable result of a knowledge tsunami is that it is pitted with ‘rabbit holes’. You can wander down a rabbit hole and become lost in a maze of ideas and information.
Keep focused and try to discern who is providing the information and for what purpose. A good example is a sales video. They have a product to sell, so they work out a common question people ask e.g. How to lose weight. Then they prepare a lengthy video, which you must follow to the end before you can find the answer. Of course, they provide heaps of testimonials along the way. The end result is that it requires you to keep purchasing the, usually expensive, product, which of course, is offered at a special rate. The video is a funnelled rabbit hole, cleverly designed to get you to arrive at the purchase page.
We all like to be ‘sold’ but in the era of a knowledge tsunami it takes courage to keep your head above water. Time and energy are a commodity, not to be wasted. Focus on high-value projects, decisions, or actions. Take a much needed break and relax when you need to. I crochet toys as my ‘change of pace’ and enjoy a good book by a well-written author, or wander in my small garden enjoying the wonderful variety of nature. At the moment I have a cactus orchid in bloom. It is truly a wonder to behold.
My aged grandmother used to say, “You are never too old to learn.” She had no comprehension what this generation would have to deal with, as her life was an entirely different dimension. Though, she did move from the era of the horse-and-cart to the aeroplane and a television set in the corner of the room. How much adaptability did that take?
We now live in a world where it is vital we constantly renew our knowledge. What was good enough yesterday, may be irrelevant tomorrow. “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn,” Alvin Toffler.
Knowledge changes our perspective, yet knowledge itself becomes obsolete. You don’t have to know how to light a copper, churn butter, or milk a cow, but you have to deal with zettabytes of knowledge. Use that knowledge to encourage, to question, to evolve fresh ideas, to discover new possibilities and explore new worlds. The saddest part about a nursing home is that most of the residents have given up on the future, live in the past and are dissatisfied with the present.
Chaos or Discovery?
Look at the result of a tsunami. Does our mind end up in that mess of confusion, through the global explosion of knowledge? There may be chaos in discovery, but press on and order will manifest itself if you are flexible enough to adapt. Life following a natural tsunami can never be the same, but it is a chance to rebuild bigger and better than before.
We can’t afford to sit on the shore and let life pass us by or thrust us into a backwater. Just like the discoverers of old, there is a universe out there to explore and knowledge is ever evolving. You can’t hold on to yesterday, so see each new day as a challenge. It is up to you to accept or ignore that challenge.
Let passion and enthusiasm be your motivation. I am extremely passionate about what I do, either in the garden, or here on the computer. Here is another quote from Karakas, “Never lose your naïve curiosity, openness and creativity.”
Knowledge Tsunami and Passion
You need to let your passion drive you. Without it, what you do will be merely mediocre, but only the exceptional are noticed and remembered. I am a passionate gardener when I’m not writing. What great delights are there still to come in the future? What can be uncovered by riding the knowledge tsunami?
There are a thousand-and one-things we don’t understand about promises of the future, but it is a wonderful hope. We must not let the knowledge tsunami drown us, or quench our passion. I can’t ride the huge waves of Hawaii, but I can ride the waves of the knowledge tsunami.
There is a better way of life ahead and creation will return to a place without ‘thistles and weeds’. A place where creation no longer groans in travail. The cycle of decay, death and rebirth will be no longer. Will we still have questions? There is a special excitement about making new discoveries and the time will come when we have eternity to discover what the knowledge tsunami of today cannot reveal.
A Perfect World
Hope reduces our feelings of helplessness, increases happiness, reduces stress, and improves our quality of life. We all need to accommodate a hope for a better future and a greater understanding. We need to use the knowledge tsunami for the good, as there is always a dark side that is geared to the negative.
Adam lived in a perfect world and could name the animals. Can you imagine a giraffe being called an elephant, so what kind of imagination or knowledge did he have? One commentator wrote, “After Adam sinned, God was obliged to subject nature to futility so that man in his sinful state might retain some measure of dominion over creation.”
The time will come when there will be another Garden of Eden environment, where the lion will lie down with the lamb. The bible speaks of a perfect era still to come, called the Millennium, or thousand-year reign of Christ. I wonder what knowledge will be like then? Will the knowledge tsunami have run out of steam, and we will know all things? Or will it be just beginning, getting us ready for eternity? One thing is certain – there will be no ‘false news’ in a perfect world and the knowledge tsunami will then make sense.
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